Irish Readership Figures 2009

And finally…. something positive on the print front.  The JNRR (Joint National Readership Research) was released and it showed that, contrary to all the signs at the news stand, readership of newspapers went up year on year.

It covered the period July 2008 to June 2009 (and a comparison is drawn from the same period twelve months earlier). Readership of any newspaper, morning, evening, Sunday, or weekly was marginally up year on year with the morning showing the biggest gains – up around 7%.

There were big increases for the Irish Independent and, certainly in percentage terms, for the Irish Times as well. Both papers will be buoyed as they reached readership numbers that they haven’t seen in a several years. The Sundays showed a decline, but you have to factor that the “any Sunday” answer is “any Sunday in the survey”. As the Sunday People pulled out of the survey this year it is slightly imbalanced. I’d suggest that the like for like readership is up on the year. A little like the circulation numbers, some of the tabloids seem to have taken a knock in the 12 months namely the Sunday World and News of the World.

The Sunday Star turned in remarkably good numbers and now has its highest readership since its inception. Contrary to their circulation numbers weekly readership was up marginally and the survey shows that the weekly market is solidly outside the two main cities with 63% of the population outside Dublin and Cork there reading a weekly. A reach of 1.5 million people a weekly is a huge number, but I don’t feel that its reflected in advertising or that the weeklies as a body/whole shout about that reach enough.

Maybe if there was less rivalry and a more cohesive approach to marketing their product as a medium they would see more fat on the bottom line. I like the approach in the UK through the newspaper society, not the most glamorous of sites, but it certainly gets the message across.

Title 2009/2008 2008/2007 +/- ‘000
AIR – Any newspaper 3100 87.8% 3036 86.2% 64
Morning Titles
Irish Independent 555 15.7% 508 14.4% 47
The Irish Times 364 10.3% 319 9.0% 45
Irish Examiner 210 6.0% 238 6.8% -28
Irish Daily Star 462 13.1% 460 13.1% 2
Irish Daily Mirror 204 5.8% 219 6.2% -15
Irish Sun 311 8.8% 289 8.2% 22
Irish Daily Mail 146 4.1% 131 3.7% 15
Any Daily 2,062 58.4% 1,967 55.8% 95
Any Morning 1,932 54.7% 1,801 51.1% 131
Evening Titles
Evening Herald 321 9.1% 317 9.0% 4
Free Titles
Herald AM 120 3.4%
Metro 110 3.1%
Any Free Morning 154 4.3%
Sunday Titles
Sunday Independent 1003 28.4% 972 27.6% 31
Sunday Tribune 172 4.9% 177 5.0% -5
Sunday World 883 25.0% 932 26.4% -49
Sunday Business Post 162 4.6% 162 4.6% 0
Sunday Times 371 10.5% 343 9.7% 28
Irish News of the World 529 15.0% 566 16.1% -37
Irish Sunday Mirror 137 3.9% 146 4.1% -9
Irish People 78 2.2%
Irish Mail on Sunday 295 8.3% 244 6.9% 51
Irish Daily Star Sunday 232 6.6% 178 5.0% 54
Any Sunday 2521 71.4% 2529 71.8% -8
Weekly
Irish Farmers Journal 240 6.8% 220 6.2% 20
Any RNAI /Mediaforce 1579 44.7% 1527 43.3% 52
Any RNAI /Mediaforce EX Dub/Cork 1504 63.2% 1479 62.9% 25

The magazine end of the business is a particularly interesting one showing the readership of each titles (expensive) magazine supplements.

Magazines 2009/2008 2008/2007 +/- ‘000
RTE Guide 294 8.3% 293 8.3% 1
Hot Press 29 0.8% 34 1.0% -5
Image 73 2.1%
Daily Magazines
Weekend I.I 540 15.3% 509 14.4% 31 97%
Day and Night I.I 231 6.5% 154 4.4% 77 42%
Health and Living I.I 317 9.0% 201 5.7% 116 57%
Property Plus I.I 246 7.0% 44%
Irish Times Mag. I.T 339 9.6% 317 9.0% 22 93%
The Ticket I.T 231 6.5% 234 6.7% -3 63%
Health Plus I.T 236 6.7% 65%
Star Chic STAR 330 9.3% 372 10.6% -42 71%
TV Mag SUN 337 9.5% 308 8.7% 29 108%
You I.D.M 145 4.1% 129 3.7% 16 99%
HQ E H. 150 4.2% 215 6.1% -65 47%
Sunday Newspapers
Life SI 680 19.2% 676 19.2% 4 68%
Tribune Magazine S Trib 122 3.5% 102 2.9% 20 71%
Amen ST Su 108 3.1% 103 2.9% 5 47%
Sunday Times Mag. S Times 271 7.7% 251 7.1% 20 73%
Culture S Times 247 7.0% 243 6.9% 4 67%
Style S Times 215 6.1% 214 6.1% 1 58%
Fabulous NOW 307 8.7% 363 10.3% -56 58%
TV Week IMOS 204 5.8% 166 4.7% 38 69%
Sunday World Mag. SWO 611 17.3% 635 18.0% -24 69%
Agenda SBP 91 2.6% 56%
Irish Country Living IFJ 124 3.5% 125 3.6% -1 52%

In general the supplemtreareadership is up and the Irish Independent ‘Health and Living’ supplement takes the prize as it made some serious gains adding nearly 60% on to its readership in the twelve months. The RTE guide stayed put which is understandable when every papers now offers seven-day listings. I wonder where it would be if it didn’t have the benefit of the broadcasters airtime and all that free publicity it receives– would it exist at all? Two curious case of kind of ‘voyeurism’!  Firstly there is Property Plus – with 246,000 people reading it each week. When the property market is stationary, if not in reverse, its a inordinately high figure – people looking to spring into action or simply lamenting value they once had?  The second is the TV Mag in The Sun which shows that it has a higher readership than the main paper. The weekend magazines of the two morning titles have a near 100% penetration of the core audience, but I suppose a magazine that is kicking around the house for a week is bound to. The Ticket and Night and Day would have a narrower appeal but the Irish Times looks like it wins that particular race. Healthy readership all round – pity there’s not an advertising rex to be had!